A pipe line fire outbreak in Nigeria on Friday has killed at least 30 people. The accident occurred when a petrol pipeline caught fire and exploded.
The incident in the southeastern Nigerian town of Aba in Abia state was triggered by a raid carried out by suspected oil thieves.
Local media reports that thieves burst the pipeline operated by the state-run Pipeline and Product Marketing Company.
AFP quotes a survivor, Nnamdi Tochukwu as saying that “The incident occurred at about 01:30 am. Those burnt are more than 30 with many others sustaining injuries”.
An official also said that “Over 30 bodies were burnt at the scene before the arrival of security operatives while many others are currently receiving medical attention at various hospitals within and outside the town.”
Meanwhile spokesman for Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) says the victims were attempting to scoop petrol from the pipeline.
Ndu Ughamadu told AFP that “I can’t give the exact number of casualties for now, but the explosion was caused as a result of oil thieves who had hacked the line to intercept the flow of petrol from the Port Harcourt refinery to Aba.”
There have been similar attacks and deaths in recent years in Nigeria. Officials struggle to end the trend.